As has been the case in recent summers the middle to end of July is proving to be the best period for diversity of species in the garden and a golden spell of three new for the list in three days had an obvious highlight for me, a Golden Plusia, not only a rare species in the county at the moment but to my eyes a very nice looking one. Also new and generally more common was a Small Dotted Buff and a Small Phoenix. This followed on from two others new at the start of the month, Orange Footman and Small Yellow Wave. Also illustrated a very smart Oak Nycteoline, very much better than the normal fairly plain ones I get.
Not much happened during the month until the last week, with the year list steadily progressing with the usual suspects but not much of real note. Thankfully numbers and variety picked up in the last few days of the month. Unfortunately, other than one Dark Sword-grass, a few Diamond-backed Moths and a procession of Silver Y, I did not record any of the migrants that are currently winging their way around the country. Only one new macro for me, a Tawny Shears.
Tawny Shears - new for garden on 17th June
Dark Sword-grass - my sixth in five years, 16th June
All black Peppered Moth impersonating a SR71 Blackbird
White Ermine - second garden record, first in June 2010
Toadflax Brocade - well established (four in May and five in June)
Ingrailed Clay - every one seems to be different
Broom Moth - a couple every year
Shoulder-striped Wainscot - common here but seemingly not for other county trappers
Despite entering my sixth summer of garden trapping, the list continues to grow with three more new for the garden in a week despite relatively low overall catches. None of them rare in county but presumably so in my area. Also illustrated others that were of interest to me.
Swallow Prominent - new for garden 11th May
Mullein - new for garden 15th May
Least Black Arches - new for garden 5th May
Iron Prominent - trapped 7th, 8th and 16th May - only one previous record in June 2013
Pale Tussock - common hairy beast
Powdered Quaker - only average just over one a year of these, this on 10th May
Maidens Blush - annual but only just, this one 7th May
Silver Y - first of the year of this common migrant 12th May
Away first ten days, family holiday with some decent birding opportunities in Cyprus, followed by cold nights for most of the rest of the month so very little to report. Even Common Quaker and Hebrew Character were counted on one hand on all but a couple of nights when it was suitable to actually put the trap out.
Only decent moth in the month was Tawny Pinion which appeared on 14th and 16th as second and third garden records and look to be different individuals. Also an early Pebble Prominent on 21st.
Micros recorded included a Diamond-backed Moth on 14th and an Esperia sulphurella that I managed to pose for a photo in the sunshine on 18th.
Red Chestnut - Not the most uncommon moth in the county but my first newbie of the year. Otherwise pretty slow with cold nights and infrequent trapping; been working through micro photos though so a good update and first publish of the list from last year soon, and no doubt the odd one appearing on this blog, including my first notable of the year below.
Red Chestnut - new for garden 12th March
Acleris cristana - 12th March
Chestnut - do not get many of these surprisingly, was not on the list for 2014 at all. This one from 9th March
Oak Beauty - one of my early spring favourites, 7th March
Two from late November (Feathered Thorn and December Moth) proved to be my last new species for the year, surprisingly only one of each of these and a few blank nights into December. Started 2015 with a pale Dotted Border, then the next two moths were the same species, one much darker and one in between...so three individuals of a species I did not get in 2013 of 2014, now just waiting more variety.
Dotted Border, darkest of three individuals at the end Feb, early March
December Moth - nice one to finish the year
Feathered Thorn - this one really coloured almost like a Barred Red
I have been birding (and general nature watching) from my base in Bedfordshire since the 1990's. From June 2010 I thought it would be fun to get into the joys of mothing so started the Wychwood Moths blog to highlight some of the successes I have had from a mature garden in Wychwood Avenue just off the A6 going north out of Luton. There maybe the odd extralimital moth or other nature images from elsewhere thrown in there as well.